When to double down in blackjack

Blackjack is a fun and fast-paced game that has an exciting history and a global impact. There are several appealing strategic steps to make during gameplay, with players trying their best to stand up against the dealer and land a better hand without busting. One risky option players have is to double down, an act that is generally done when players have full confidence in the hand they have been dealt.

What is double down in blackjack exactly? It is a bet that shows your confidence in your hand, where you can raise your initial wager. While it is generally thought of to be on the risky side, gamers that know the best times to double down have an excellent opportunity to outsmart the dealer, collecting a larger pot in the end. When should you double down? There are 3 scenarios in which you should double down 100% of the time.

Recommended Cases for a Blackjack Double Down

When to double down in blackjack - Recommended Cases for a Blackjack Double Down
  1. When the dealer has a lower-value card facing up, there are a lot of things that can happen. Your move should depend on what you have in hand from the get-go and if you have an 11, you should double down. Why does this work? It is because typically, the dealer has a higher chance of going over. When you choose to double down here, you generally leave the dealer with no other choice than to hit, which in turn increases their chances of going over.
  2. If you’re lucky enough to land a soft 16, 17, or 18 on the first go, it is recommended to double down in blackjack. What we mean by ‘soft’ is an Ace combined with a face value card of 6-8. Do this, however, when you notice that the dealer falls short and has a face-up card that is lower than 6. It is not always a preferred choice, but adding this to your gaming habits could come with some profitable rewards.
  3. If you have a hard or 10, go ahead and double down, especially in the case that the dealer has a low-value card facing up. It is because your chances of beating out the dealer are higher, and you take out all the risk of busting.

Do keep in mind that though these are the suggested times to double down, things don’t always go as planned. Most dealers have been playing the game for years and have a lot of experience with all types of hands.

When Not to Double Down

When to double down in blackjack - When Not to Double Down

What about the times when you should not double down blackjack? The 3 situations you should choose to play otherwise are below.

  1. Think before you act on 11. It can be very tempting to go ahead and double down with an 11 in hand because your chances of going over are low, and the opportunity to beat out the dealer is high. 11 is a good number, but you need to consider some things before choosing to double down, so do it from time to time but not always.
  2. If you take anything from this article, this would be the golden message. Never, never double down when the dealer is showing an Ace. Ace is a powerful card, one that can take on the value of either 11 or 1. Players and dealers use the Ace to their advantage, and generally play very well, able to have an extra bit of security in the case that a higher value card is dealt.
  3. Never double down on anything that is higher than 11. Here, your chances of busting are higher, and it is just all-around smarter to hit. In this case, the chances of the dealer busting are higher than you reaping the benefits from doubling down.

Again, all these tips are meant only to guide you. As with most gambling and casino play, anything can happen, so always keep your mind open to a surprise.

Final Thoughts

For the newbies out there, it can be a good strategy to watch other players and do as they do. The problem with this approach is that you will find players that play with large bankrolls and double down all the time. What you might not see is the vast quantities of money that go down with sloppy play. It is fun to bet without care and just for the luck of the game, but not every gamer has that opportunity. Following our suggestions is an excellent place to start, taking the next steps toward your journey on the way to becoming an expert and knowledgeable player.